|Publication number||US6895711 B1|
|Application number||US 10/762,780|
|Publication date||May 24, 2005|
|Filing date||Jan 23, 2004|
|Priority date||Jan 23, 2004|
|Publication number||10762780, 762780, US 6895711 B1, US 6895711B1, US-B1-6895711, US6895711 B1, US6895711B1|
|Original Assignee||Owner America Corp.|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (19), Referenced by (20), Classifications (5), Legal Events (4)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
The present invention relates to features of a fishing hook, more particularly structures for maintaining a position of a soft bait on a fishing hook.
The prior art describes that a soft plastic or elastomeric shape may be used as a lure when securely attached to a fishing hook. These soft plastic or elastomeric shapes have come to be known as “soft baits”, partly because they may be compressed, stretched, and even broken in two with the force supplied by a user's hands. Soft baits are often colored and made into shapes similar to live baits used by fishermen. A popular and highly effective soft bait is one formed like a relatively long worm such as a night crawler. Other well known shapes of soft baits include a crawfish, insects, salamanders, small to mid size fish, as well as shapes that have no known analog to a live bait. It has been speculated that soft baits do not act like their live bait analogs when being drawn through the water to attract game fish. However, soft baits as they are drawn through the water do in fact attract game fish very well, even when many other baits and lures do not work at all.
Soft baits usually consist of a single soft and elastomeric material or polymer. The soft and pliable nature of soft baits make them easy to lose in typical fishing situations. Carolina and Texas “riggin” or rigging are forms of setting a fishing hook in a soft bait. Generally, the object of these forms of rigging is to connect the soft bait to specific locations on the hook to maximize security (the tendency to stay connected to a hook) and obstacle shielding (avoiding hooking underwater weeds and branches). It is well known to introduce a fishing hook point in a soft bait and draw the hook through the soft bait until a part of the soft bait is located covering or near the hook's fishing line connector. Another part of the soft bait is simultaneously or later drawn onto the hook point to shield it from underwater weeds or branches.
The above forms of rigging are effective for attracting fish and avoiding underwater obstructions to some degree. However, the simple act of dragging of the soft bait underwater for trolling often pulls the soft bait from its forward position covering or near the hook's fishing line connection. This act in turn pushes the soft bait covering the hook point from its shielding position. The hook point shielding is lost and the intended trolling form is drastically changed so that the entire hook and soft bait wobble instead of moving smoothly through the water. There is a need for a structure to improve the security of soft baits on fishing hooks.
Fish that are likely to be drawn to soft baits often gather in areas of underwater plants, weeds and branches. These fish seek protection from other predator fish and waterfowl. While soft baits are effective, their use can be limited where a user suspects that they will lose their soft bait by water drag or contact with underwater weeds or branches. Prior art devices have not effectively supported soft baits on relatively slender fishing hooks from these underwater hazards.
The present invention is one or more barbs and/or one or more movable stay pieces on a fishing hook to prevent a soft bait from moving from its desired setting. In a simplest embodiment, an elastomeric or polymeric stay piece is movable along a shaft of a fishing hook and is secured adjacent to an outside surface of a soft bait. The stay piece has a broad surface abutting the soft bait so that the soft bait cannot easily move past that broad surface and down the hook shaft where the stay piece is located.
In a preferred embodiment of a method for using the stay piece, a part of a soft bait is threaded onto a fishing hook in the manner of Texas or Carolina rigging. In that style of rigging, a part of the soft bait covers or is near the hook's fishing line connection. A stay piece is moved on hook's shaft from a distal position to the hook's fishing line connection to a more proximal position abutting an outside surface of the soft bait.
In a more preferred embodiment, the stay piece comprises a threadable end and an abutting end, where the hook's shaft passes in one of the ends and out the other. The threadable end comprises a relatively small surface area radial from an axis of the hook's shaft. The abutting end comprises a relatively large surface area radial from an axis of the hook's shaft. The stay piece formed in this way is threaded onto the hook's shaft so that the threadable end is pointed toward the hook's point and the abutting end is pointed toward the hook's fishing line connection. The stay piece is threaded onto the hook's shaft before drawing a soft bait onto the hook. The stay piece is located relatively far from the hook's fishing line connection. The soft bait is drawn onto the hook in the manner of Texas or Carolina rigging. In that style of rigging, a part of the soft bait covers or is near the hook's fishing line connection. However, in the invention method, a leading surface of the soft bait drawn onto the hook's point is drawn up the hook's shaft until it reaches the threadable end of the stay piece. This leading surface of the soft bait is soft enough so that a user can use finger pressure to push the soft bait into the threadable surface, causing the stay piece to be enveloped by the soft bait. The user continues to push the soft bait up the hook's shaft while the stay piece remains in place on the hook's shaft. As the user continues to push the soft bait up the hook's shaft and over the stay piece, the stay piece emerges from the soft bait. The soft bait is then positioned over or near the hook's fishing line connection. The stay piece is then moved up the hook's shaft so that the abutting end abuts an outside surface of the soft bait.
In the previous method, the abutting end of the stay piece prevents the soft bait from being pushed back down the hook's shaft. The stay piece prevents the soft bait from being pushed out its desired position by the drag of water or contact with underwater weeds or branches. Referring to use of the invention combination of soft bait, hook and stay piece, the combination can be drawn by fishing line through water to be affected by water drag and contact with solid objects. However, the stay piece (and/or one or more barbs on the hook) will resist substantially prevent the soft bait from being moved down the hook's shaft. The stay piece, as described above, has an abutting end that presses against an outside surface of a soft bait when the combination is in underwater forward motion. The abutting end may be flat, concave or comprise flexible extensions adapted to pass through soft bait.
Each stay piece comprises an effective radial diameter. This effective radial diameter is measured from a central axis of the stay piece. The central axis is approximately where the hook's shaft is located when the stay piece is threaded onto that shaft. The radial diameter of each stay piece is relatively small. This effective radial diameter is small enough so that when the stay piece is drawn through the soft bait, the passing of the stay piece will not substantially affect the soft bait structure. If an effective radial diameter is too large, the act of its passing through the soft bait will so enlarge an internal path that the soft bait will be easily drawn over the abutting end of the stay piece in use. The abutting end is adapted to retain the soft bait in place but also to have a small enough effective radial diameter so that the soft bait is not damaged by the stay piece's passage through the soft bait.
The present invention also includes threading stay pieces into other places on a fishing hook shaft to maintain the location of a soft bait on a hook's shaft. Where practical, stay pieces can be set on one or both sides of a soft bait regardless of the location of the soft bait on a hook's shaft.
In one embodiment, a stay piece can be set so that its abutting end is adjacent to a part of a soft bait covering a point of a fishing hook. The stay piece keeps underwater weeds and branches from substantially pushing the soft bait from a shielding position when being drawn through the water. However, a fish strike will deliver enough force to drive the soft bait past the abutting end and expose the hook's point to set the fish on the hook.
In another embodiment, two stay pieces are set on a hook's shaft adjacent to a threaded-on part of a soft bait. The part of a soft bait is bracketed by the abutting ends of stay pieces. In this position, the threaded-on part of the soft bait cannot move in either direction on the hook's shaft.
Many of the most supple and desirable of soft baits are easily cut or smashed. If soft baits are sufficiently cut or smashed, such soft baits cannot be secured in place or held at all on a fishing hook. The present invention uses stay pieces to dramatically improve the security and shielding function of soft baits on fishing hooks. However, no structure can entirely prevent loss of a soft bait from a fishing hook. If a structure can entirely prevent such a loss, the material being used on the fishing hook is not a soft bait.
The invention is now discussed with reference to the figures.
Sections 104 and/or 105 optionally comprise one or stay barbs as generally shown for stay barb 106. Stay barbs are continuous with and are formed from the shaft material of section 104 or 105. Stay barbs are adapted to retain a soft bait drawn over them and left embedded therein. Barbs 106 are not entirely effective in retaining a soft bait on sections 104 and/or 105 during trolling or other fishing operation. The invention stay pieces are used alone or in addition to the stay barbs in the invention.
Stay piece 107 is shown in
It is preferred that the frustro conical solid bodies of stay pieces have small, threadable end diameters of 0.5 to 5 millimeters and large, abutting end diameters of from 2 to 10 millimeters. In this embodiment, the effective radial diameter is from 2 to 5 millimeters. The choice of end diameters for frustro conical solid bodies will depend on the diameter or hook shafts and qualities of the elastomer or polymer of the soft bait according to the objects of the invention.
The above design options will sometimes present the skilled designer with considerable and wide ranges from which to choose appropriate apparatus and method modifications for the above examples. However, the objects of the present invention will still be obtained by that skilled designer applying such design options in an appropriate manner.
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|U.S. Classification||43/42.53, 43/42.24|
|Jan 23, 2004||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: OWNER AMERICAN, CORP., CALIFORNIA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:NAKAMICHI, SHIGEYUKI;REEL/FRAME:014924/0120
Effective date: 20040105
|Dec 1, 2008||REMI||Maintenance fee reminder mailed|
|May 24, 2009||LAPS||Lapse for failure to pay maintenance fees|
|Jul 14, 2009||FP||Expired due to failure to pay maintenance fee|
Effective date: 20090524